Sunday, August 12, 2012

‘Back to the BCs’ by Pavithra Srinivasan

The City of the Dead

"'You know that we Sumerians refer to your lands, as a whole, as Melukkha – the High Country,' said the merchant. 'But why have you named this new city 'The City of the Dead'? Forgive me, but it sounds inauspicious.''

"'Yes, a question many have asked,' Manis said slowly. 'We all know how the living fade with time. But these buildings, coins and artefacts will remain as a lasting testimony to how we once flourished. And I hope that, some day in the future, our descendants will think of us with awe and pride, that the world will know how great our civilisation was. I want this city to be remembered thousands of years from now, like the great cities of Sumer, Babylon, or Egypt.' He paused, then continued: 'I am a realist too – I know our people will vanish one day. They may die out, and other cities, other civilisations may take their place. After all, human life is so fragile. But there is no death where there is history, where there are memories. Death is not to be feared in such a place.' Manis smiled. 'And that's why I named this city 'Mohenjo-Daro'.'"

(p. 9, 'Back to the BCs' by Pavithra Srinivasan – Helios)

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